“It was Hitler’s fault. If it had not been for him I would not have acquired the involvement in warfare which has shaped my surprisingly long life.”
After five years in the RAF, the Army and 21 SAS, and having never heard a shot fired in anger, Christopher Dobson left the military and entered the world of journalism.
Rising to dizzying heights as one of Lord Beaverbrook’s “Young Eagles,” he began to make a name for himself as a sub-editor, gossip columnist and foreign correspondent.
From New York and Washington to Cyprus and Moscow, Dobson pursued his craft, sparred with censors and even entered the Hindu Kush in search of the abominable snowman.
However, a fall was inevitable.
Dismissed by Beaverbrook in the early 1960s, he entered a period of going from one publication to another and turned freelance, eventually meeting Ronald Payne.
In these years — years in which terrorism began to rise — Dobson travelled to ever more dangerous hotspots, including in Vietnam, Africa, the Middle East and Northern Ireland.
Throughout all this he had a growing family, and eventually his work was brought uncomfortably close to home, his name appearing on Black September and IRA hit lists.
Recounting days spent dodging bombs and bullets for bylines, Dobson opens our eyes to a bygone era of journalism, and the extraordinary people and events that have shaped his extraordinary career.
Christopher Dobson is an award-winning war correspondent and was a frequent collaborator of Ronald Payne prior to his friend’s death in 2013. Together they covered terrorist activity on four continents for numerous newspapers and magazines on both sides of the Atlantic, and served as consultants on terrorism for ABC and NBC News.